The first thing you need to know about this mystery movie is that it’s not much of a mystery. You’ll know who the killer is right away, and not just because of your excellent deductive skills. While it doesn’t keep you guessing in the traditional mystery way, it does keep you on your toes because it delights in being flat-out weird.
Jeff Garlin directs, co-writes and stars as Gene Handsome, an L.A. homicide detective who will strike you as half bumbling fool, half savant. His partner Fleur (Natasha Lyonne) is more interested in getting laid and his superior (Amy Sedaris, playing delightfully against type) is a stranger case still. Not to mention the fact that Handsome is in charge of “detective school,” training up the new recruits, not all of whom are destined to become ace detectives. So he’s got his hands full when a decapitated body is found on the manicured lawns of a minor celebrity (Steven Weber), splayed out in the shape of a Star of David. Handsome tracks down all of the dead girl’s known associates, including his own beautiful new neighbour, in order to crack the case.
Like I said, the detecting is rather beside the point. This movie feels more like an exercise in the bizarre. I happen to like Jeff Garlin and find him watchable, but this movie may have set a new record in our house for number of arched eyebrows I shot at Sean. There’s little plot but quite a lot of satire in the police-procedural vein. If you’re up for some of Garlin’s trademark witticisms and you don’t mind if your movies exist outside the box, then this might be a WTF way to spend some time with Netflix. At any rate I admire the experimentation and the improvisational feel; Netflix certainly has become home movies who would otherwise remain homeless. And even if they don’t always hit it out of the park, at least it’s not another super hero franchise!